The actor who sustained injuries in August will be returning to work in Atlanta.
After several setbacks, among them a major on-set injury and COVID-19 infections, Marvel Studios‘ Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is finally restarting production, with star Letitia Wright healed and back in Atlanta ready to resume her role as fan-favorite character Shuri.
Production was initially to have restarted last Monday but was delayed thanks to several cast and crew, Lupita Nyong’o among them, testing positive for COVID-19. Next week, shooting will resume in Atlanta on Ryan Coogler’s picture. Sources say it will take about four weeks.
Injury to Wright while filming in Boston a sequence that involved a stunt rig Production then shut down in late November after the Wakanda Forever team filmed as much as they could without Wright, while she continued to heal at her home in London.
Eyes were on Wright, a British citizen, because she had expressed anti-COVID vaccine sentiments. Late last year, the CDC issued rules requiring that all non-immigrant and non-citizen travelers to the U.S. be fully vaccinated. Proof of vaccination must also be provided before boarding a plane. Although she has not commented on her vaccination status, many sources claim that these issues have been resolved.
Wright’s agent also did not comment, only telling The Hollywood Reporter, “She always intended to return but just needed to wait until she had fully recovered.”
Separately, sources say Winston Duke, who plays M’Baku, negotiated a hefty raise for his return to Black Panther due to what is being described as an expanded role in the Panther mythos. It is not clear what this expansion will look like.
Marvel had no comment.
Insiders say the restart is not expected to impact the movie’s release date, which is currently Nov. 11, 2022. It had already been moved once before, from July 8, 2022.
Wakanda Forever has trudged a rocky path so far. Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman died of colon cancer in August 2020, with Marvel and the filmmakers having to reconceive the project without the beloved actor. Wright, who became a breakout star in 2018 thanks to her work as Shuri, the sister of Black Panther T’Challa, was e